Zachary Berry
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Chrysler Pacifica’s Bizarre New California Campaign Stars a Bear, a Bird, and a Boulder

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Chrysler recruits the official symbols of California to market its Pacifica Plug-in Hybrid model

It’s like The Expendables of California

California is a bit of a different beast when it comes to marketing vehicles than most other areas in the United States. For example, 40% of all hybrid vehicles in the country are sold in the state of California.

California is also one of the largest markets for minivans. Put two and two together, and you have the perfect market for Chrysler’s new Pacifica Plug-in Hybrid.

Therefore, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has decided to launch a new multimedia campaign for the Pacifica in California, and it is quite bizarre to say the least.


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The campaign stars four symbols for the state of California: the grizzly bear (California’s state animal), the valley quail (California’s state bird), the desert tortoise (California’s state reptile), and the serpentine (California’s state rock). Together, these four attempt to convince Californians to adopt the Chrysler Pacifica Plug-in Hybrid as the “Official Family Vehicle for California.”

To appeal to California’s lifestyle and culture, the bear, quail, and tortoise talk about “hip” and “trendy” things like Tweeting and juicing. The rock doesn’t talk about anything, because it’s a rock.

Honestly, the rock is probably the best character

You can view one one of these television spots below:

Of course, this campaign won’t be restricted to just broadcast commercials. Other mediums used will include print, radio, digital, and billboards.

The Chrysler Pacifica Plug-in Hybrid is the only vehicle of its kind currently on the market. Using a hybrid powertrain, the minivan can achieve an 84 MPGe rating and 33 miles of all-electric range.


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“It makes perfect sense that we say the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is the ‘Official Family Vehicle for California,’” explained Tim Kuniskis, Head of Passenger car Brands for FCA North America. “Aligning the minivan with other easily identifiable California state symbols in a fun, engaging way is rooted in the vehicle’s fuel efficiency, functionality, technology and its recognition as the most awarded minivan of 2016 and 2017.”

The quirky collection of California characters seems like a strange advertising choice, but perhaps it will pay off for Chrysler in the end. They might even go the way of the Geico Cavemen and receive their own television show that lasts six episodes before it is ultimately cancelled.

It would undoubtedly include an over-the-top laugh track

  • Zachary Berry

    Zachary Berry currently resides in the Dayton, Ohio area. However, he enjoys traveling from place to place, as he was born in Oklahoma City and has also lived in Albuquerque and Orlando (such is the life of a military brat). Zachary graduated from Ohio University with a major in Strategic Communication, which is fancy talk for advertising and public relations. Beginning his career at The News Wheel as a lowly intern, he was able to climb his way to the top, eventually claiming his place within the last cubicle on the left. Other jobs that Zachary has held include driving around a safari truck at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. When he’s not putting his nose to the grindstone, Zachary enjoys watching and critiquing movies and television. See more articles by Zachary.